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Bachelor PPE

Welcome to the John Stuart Mill College!

The John Stuart Mill College is home to the PPE programme at VU Amsterdam. It is housed on the fourth floor of the main building of VU Amsterdam – close to important facilities such as the central library and the three founding faculties. Here you will find PPE’s coffee corner, seminar rooms, lecture hall and private study area, as shown in the picture above. Since PPE is an English-taught programme, all information from hereon will be in English. 

Important information

  • Covidcrisis and studying at VU Amsterdam

    We can imagine you have a lot of questions about what studying at the VU looks like during corona. For the latest information and answers to frequently asked questions about VU University Amsterdam during the corona pandemic, please visit vu.nl/coronavirus. If you have any further questions, do not hesitate to contact the Student Desk. 

    International students: you can find the most frequently asked questions on www.vu.nl/corona/international. There is also a FAQ webpage.

    In case your question is not answered there: 

    • For General questions: international@vu.nl
    • For housing related questions, please contact our Accommodation Services team via: studentaccommodation@vu.nl.
    • For all  visa-related questions, please contact the Immigration Services team via: studentimmigration@vu.nl.
    • For questions concerning application or admission requirements, you can contact your International Student Advisor Rosa Vijftigschild via e-mail or telephone: admissionsppe@vu.nl/+31 20 59 85 641         

    Education first semester  
    During corona, students can continue to expect high-quality education at VU Amsterdam. Keep an eye out for news items on this dashboard. In view of the ongoing vaccination campaign we are hopeful that we can go back to normal student life in September. Lecturers are eager to engage with new students in our small-scale educational settings, and the staff and study association want to revive our vibrant community on the fourth floor. We very much look forward to welcoming you to Amsterdam and meeting you at the John Stuart Mill College in September 2021!

  • Complete your registration

    Track the status of your application in VUweb

    Be sure to complete your enrolment before the PPE recommended deadline of August 15th. If you are unsure about which conditions are still outstanding, please contact dutchadmission.ppe@vu.nl (Dutch diploma applicants) or admissionsppe@vu.nl (international diploma applicants).

    Your registration is complete if you see 'registered'  indicated in the 'my programmes' section in Studielink. Registration or application changes made in Studielink or VUweb, are tracked in your status overview the next day. Once your registration is complete, you will receive a Proof of Registration document within two to four weeks.

    Check your registration status
    1. Log in to VUweb.
    2. Under 'Complete Application', go to the relevant programme.
    3. Under 'Status', click on 'Check status'.
    4. For each requirement, you can see if you still need to take any action.

    Questions?

    For questions about the registration process, please contact your Admissions Officer (dutchadmission.ppe@vu.nl) or your International Student Advisor (admissionsppe@vu.nl) if you applied with an international diploma. 

    Additional information for international students

    Are you are still waiting to hear back from us? We advise you to wait with tuition fee payments until you received your decision on admission.

    How to pay tuition fees

    If you are a student from a SEPA* country:

    You will be able to select the digital authorisation option to arrange a spread payment option (in 5 instalments), in which case the first payment is collected from your account around 25 September. Alternatively, you can pay the whole amount in a lump sum.

    If you are a student from a SEPA country with a VUFP scholarship:

    You can select the digital authorisation option and fill out your bank details to stop sending messages. If you do not confirm the digital authorisation form in the to-do list in the next step, no payments will be collected from your account.

    If you are a student from a non-SEPA country:

    You can fill out your country details to stop Studielink from sending out the messages. Studielink will notify you that you cannot arrange payment directly via Studielink. You can either wait until you have opened a Dutch bank account in August or arrange an international bank transfer.

    All payment details can be found on the Tuition Fees page.

    * Single Euro Payments Area

  • Support

    Student Desk

    Many answers to questions about your degree programme can be found on VUweb. For questions about registration for courses, enrolment, tuition fees, student cards, transcripts, etc. you can contact the Student Desk.

    E-mail: studentdesk@vu.nl
    Location: Main Building (HG), central hall, VU campus

    International Service Desk

    The International Service Desk (ISD) deals with general questions of international students.
    E-mail: international@vu.nl
    Location: Main Building (HG), central hall, VU campus

    Wellbeing

    For questions or advice regarding personal circumstances that interfere in your studies, a delay in your study progress, or study skills or choices within your degree programme, email PPE's Academic Advisor Marija Vrbancic at academicadvisor.ppe@vu.nl or make an (online) appointment here

    Studying with a disability

    If you have a disability, a chronic illness, dyslexia, or a mental disability, this does not mean that you will be unable to complete your studies. If you need help with your studies due to a disability, there are several people you can turn to—for example, your Academic Advisor.

    The Student Counsellors at VU Amsterdam can advise you on matters such as financial support in the event of a delay in your study progress. If you have problems such as performance anxiety or study stress, or if you are experiencing problems that interfere with your studies or prevent you from completing your degree, you can get in touch with one of the Student Psychological Counsellors at VU Amsterdam. You can find more information on Studying with a disability on VUweb.

    Negative Recommendation on Continuation of Studies (BSA)

    The faculty makes every effort to help students complete their studies successfully. Thats why your study progress is closely monitored from the very start If, during the first year, your results continue to be below the expected standard, it is plausible that your results worsen during the programme. 

    Based on your first year Bachelor programme results, the faculty can issue a Negative Recommendation on Continuation of Studies (BSA). If you have not made sufficient progress, you may be required to discontinue your Study programme. You are expected to achieve 54 credits – in other words, pass at least 9 out of 10 courses - in your first year of study. If you are ill or if there are exceptional circumstances and you are unable to achieve 54 credits, you must contact your academic advisor as soon as possible.

  • Registration for courses and exams

    To participate in courses and exams, you have to register via the registration module. You can register for courses in period 1 starting on 26 July up to the first week of the teaching period (no later than 13 September). Please note: for the remaining periods, registration closes two to four weeks prior to the start of each teaching period (depending on the period). Further information about Registration for Courses and Exams is available here

    Plan your courses by adding them to your schedule in the registration module in VUweb even before the course is open for registration. Please note: planning is not the same as registering! If you planned courses, you still need register for them, the related teaching activities, and exams. Registration is not automatic. 

    When you have received a fail (or NVD) for the examination, you will automatically be registered for the resit. If you did not take part in the examination (No Show) or if you passed the examination, you have to sign up for the re-examination yourself if you want to take part in it. 

    Tip!

    Set the deadlines in your calendar or as a reminder in your phone so that you are on time. If you don't sign up in time for courses and exams, you won't be able to participate!

  • Practical information

    VUnet-ID and VUweb

    The VUnet-ID is your username and password that gives you access to all kinds of digital services such as Canvas. VUweb is an important information source during your studies. Here you can find all relevant information such as your e-mail, personal schedule, exam grades, important announcements, and a link to the Study Guide. If you have lost your VUnet-ID, please contact the Student Desk. Keep your university registration card or other forms of identification ready for identification purposes.

    VU Amsterdam e-mail

    Each student is assigned a personal VU Amsterdam e-mail address, with the following format: studentnumber@student.vu.nl. You can read and send e-mails by logging in to VUweb with your VUnet-ID. The university uses this e-mail address exclusively when corresponding with you about your studies. Please check your inbox regularly to ensure you do not miss important information about your degree programme. If you would like to avoid logging in to check your e-mails, you can have your VU Amsterdam e-mail automatically forwarded to your private e-mail address.

    Canvas

    Canvas is the digital learning environment of VU Amsterdam. Each course also has a course in Canvas, to which you automatically have access when you have signed up for the course. On Canvas, you will find the course's study manual and examples of exam questions. The teacher will keep you informed about your progress, and you will sometimes have to submit assignments via Canvas. Also, after a lecture, teachers often post the lecture sheets on Canvas so students can study them at home.

    Study Guide and timetable

    In the online Study Guide you will find information about the content of your courses, method of assessment and which literature you need. The timetable of your study programme can be found at rooster.vu.nl.

    VU student app 

    In the VU Student app you will find useful information like your timetable, Study Guide,  VU mail and all sorts of other handy shortcuts. Download the app for iPhone or Android.                                                                                                      

    Books 

    In the course descriptions in the Study Guide you will find the literature you need for the first courses of the year. You will receive more information about the other literature you need during the first lecture and in Canvas. You can buy all the literature you need at the VU Bookstore.  

    Exemptions

    If you think you might be eligible for exemptions, for example due to prior education, please submit a request well in advance of commencing the course in question to the Examination Board of your programme. You can do this via VUweb.

  • Distinguishing yourself

    The John Stuart Mill College is a so-called Honours college. All students have been selected because of their talents and ambitions, the academic standards are high, and we offer lots of opportunities for personal development and support. We therefore expect you to flourish during your time at the college. There are several ways to distinguish yourself: 

    Good grades & Honours programme

    Achieving good marks is perhaps the most useful way of distinguishing yourself. It will help you to develop academically, but will also bring your additional opportunities. Research master programs often select applicants on the basis of the grades they obtain during the Bachelor’s phase. 

    If you have a GPA of 7.5 or higher, you are eligible for the internal or external Honours programme. The John Stuart Mill College offers talented and motivated bachelor’s students the opportunity to study PPE in greater depth by taking courses in all three tracks (instead of two). Alternatively, students with good grades and a strong motivation can also be admitted to one of the other VU Honours Programmes, particularly those at the Faculty of Humanities, the Faculty of Social Sciences, or the School for Business and Economics. More information about these possibilities will be given during the first year.

    Dutch Grading System

    International students may find that the Dutch grading system is different from their own. To help set your expectations of the Dutch system, here you'll find a short explanation.   

    Extra-curricular courses

    If you wish to take additional courses alongside your required courses, you can register for 'extra-curricular courses'. Naturally, you must meet the entry requirements for the course. Please see the course descriptions in the Study Guide for specifics.

    If you take an extra course that is not part of your programme and wish to add it to your own programme, you need the Examination Board's approval. If you take that extra course at another educational institution, you need to forward your credits to VU Amsterdam so that they can be registered to your dossier.

    Top-level athletes and other forms of outstanding performance

    Do you perform at top level in sports or in a cultural field, besides pursuing your studies? VU Amsterdam wants to stimulate you in this. If you qualify, you can benefit from a financial scheme and additional facilities."

  • That's not all

    Of course, there are also other ways to distinguish yourself as an excellent student. One way to do so is to participate actively in our extracurricular programme and gain valuable experience as a result. You can become a member of the PPE Programme Committee, join the board or one of the committees of PPE’s study association KallioPPE, or apply for a grant from our PPE Incubator Fund for a project you have designed yourself, in collaboration with fellow students. In addition to your studies, you can become a member of a study association or enjoy the cultural, sporting and social activities offered by VU Amsterdam. Find more information on our Extracurricular activities page.

    Sports & Culture

    At the Griffioen, the VU cultural centre in Uilenstede, you can go to the theatre to see the latest comedy shows or you can follow a creative course. VU is great for sports as well. At the VU sports centre you can take part in all kinds of sports, from bodyshape to Zumba, for student prices.

    Your opinion matters

    Would you like to have a voice in educational matters? Why not joint a committe and make yourself heard. For more information visit our Student Council section or the Faculty Student Council web page.

  • Career Services

    Studying is about so much more than studying for your passion or getting ready for a specific job or industry field. It is about getting to know yourself, trying to figure out what you want and what you are good at. Therefore, PPE students can make use of the Career Services of the School of Business and Economics (SBE). SBE Career Services is here to support you with all your career questions. How do I write a powerful CV or cover letter? What company culture do I fit in? What to expect in the application process? Career Services provides career workshops, individual coaching, meetups with companies and a vacancy board to find your internship or job. Find out more on this page or go directly to their career platform

  • VU Introduction Days

    Introduction for international students

    All international students receive an e-mail from the International Office informing them how to arrange practical matters after arriving in Amsterdam. Also, VU International Office will arrange several online activities in order to help international students become acquainted with the city of Amsterdam and the university campus, to get to know your fellow students and, of course, to have fun! More information will be published on the webpage. 

    VU Introduction Days                                                                                        

    The VU Introducation Days for both Dutch and International students are from Monday 25 to Tuesday 31 August. We highly recommend all students participate. You will receive the invitation from the end of June. A number of activities, such as a welcome by your Study Programme and the provision of information by our Academic Advisor (on Monday 30 and Tuesday 31 August) are essential for starting your study programme! You don't want to miss out, so mark these days in your schedule. You will receive information about this PPE-specific part of the introduction in August. 

  • Be prepared

    As you know, a sufficient level of Mathematics is a requirement for admission into the programme. Facts and numbers will improve your understanding about economics and politics, and will help you make better and viable strategic choices. For these reasons, the first semester of the programme starts with the course ‘Methods of PPE I’ in which mathematics plays a crucial role.

    In order to help you prepare for the expected level of Mathematics, VU Amsterdam has developed a self-assessment test. This diagnostic test is free of charge and its only purpose is to give you an idea of your proficiency in the subject. It lets you know how your current quantitative skills fit with the topics that will be covered in the methods course. If your current skills are lower than advised, the diagnostic test will also provide suggestions on how to improve. In case you require further preparation, you can enroll for the online VU Summer Course 2021. This online course takes place from the 2nd until the 15th of August 2021 and costs 49 euros. This gives you acces to the online module for an entire year.  For those of you who already have the required level but want to be extra well prepared, we also offer the online VU Advanced Summer Course 2021. Go to this website to learn more. 

    For those of you that still have to meet the mathematics requirement (if this was mentioned as a condition in your admission letter): the online course does not in any case replace the Mathematics A or OMPT-A exam. The self-assessment test and online courses are for preparation purposes only.

  • Three VU Amsterdam Faculties

    The John Stuart Mill College and its PPE programme have been created as a joint initiative of three faculties of VU Amsterdam, namely the Faculty of Humanities (Dutch acronym: FGW), the Faculty of Social Sciences (Dutch acronym: FSW), and the School of Business and Economics (SBE). The Faculty of Humanities (FGW) acts as secretary for the collaboration between the three faculties involved.  

    For administrative reasons all PPE students are registered in the VU administrative system as students of the Faculty of Humanities. One implication is that PPE students are allowed to vote for candidates for the FGW Faculty Student Council, and that the Educational Office of the Faculty of Humanities processes your diploma.